Project Involve FAQ
What is Project Involve?
Project Involve is Film Independent’s signature diversity program that fosters the talents of emerging filmmakers. The program offers its selected Fellows a one-on-one mentorship, monthly filmmaking workshops for continued education, a short film production experience, and community screenings that promote diverse subject matters.
Am I a strong candidate?
While it is difficult to define the selection criteria, Project Involve seeks filmmakers with original voices and unique visions who can help fulfill our mission of increasing diversity in the film industry. Additionally, strong consideration is given to those whose work samples and statements of interest demonstrate talent, passion, focus, responsibility and commitment to collaboration.
What kind of work samples are you looking for?
Work samples should demonstrate your current level of filmmaking endeavors and meet the criteria for the track for which you are applying.
What is involved in the Film Critique requirement for Industry Track applicants?
Film Critique is the equivalent of a work sample for Industry Track applicants. The Film Critique section requires the applicants to write a critical review of a theatrically released film within the past year (film selected by the applicant). We are not looking for a synopsis of the selected film, but rather an exploration of the applicants’ critical understanding of why the film worked or vice versa based on their opinions. Critiques that rely on professional critics’ published reviews will not be considered competitive.
What kind of recommendation letters are you looking for?
You will need to use your best judgment as to who can provide the best reference for your application. References may come from supervisors, employers, professors, colleagues, etc. They should indicate some knowledge of your filmmaking endeavors and aspirations, as well as personal assessment (i.e. maturity, commitment, etc.).
Is it better to submit a reel or one completed film for the work sample?
We prefer to receive one completed piece of film (short, feature, doc, music video, etc.) for the work sample.
Should I mail hard copies of the recommendation letters?
Please do NOT mail hard copies. We prefer to receive the letters via email per instructions on the application.
May I apply to more than one track?
No, you must select one track to apply per application year.
May I apply with my writing/directing/producing partner as a team?
We do not accept team applications because we are not a project-based program; we do not work to develop anyone’s personal projects. The teams are welcome to apply for the same program year, but each application will be reviewed individually.
What is the selection process?
The selection is based on a rigorous review of the applications and work samples, and letters of recommendations if applicable.
Who reviews the applications?
All applications are reviewed by the Artist Development staff.
What does the mentorship consist of?
Each Fellow will receive a one-on-one mentorship with an industry professional. We ask the mentors for a minimum of 6 meetings with their assigned Fellow. Once the mentorship is in place, the mentor and the Fellow will schedule and design their personalized meetings. The mentorship is NOT an apprenticeship.
What do the workshops consist of?
Monthly workshops with guest speakers cover various aspects of filmmaking: directing, pitching, producing, production design, casting, cinematography, editing, etc. Attendance is mandatory to all workshops and other education seminars. Most events take place in the evenings at the Film Independent offices, with some exceptions.
What is the short film production component?
Each Fellow is assigned to a team to make a 5 minute short film. Film Independent will take on the role of the executive producers and will oversee the entirety of the production process.
How long is the program? Can I participate with a full time job?
The program starts in October and concludes in June. Most events take place in the evenings making the program conducive to those with full time day jobs.
Does it cost to participate in the program?
Aside from the non-refundable application fee, there is no tuition to attend Film Independent’s Artist Development programs.
Is there a refund for the application fee if I were to withdraw my application at any point?
The application fee is non-refundable.
What other benefits do the selected Fellows receive?
• A pass to the Filmmaker Forum
• Mentorship and Alumni support
• A pass to the Los Angeles Film Festival
• Inclusion in the FIND Talent Guide
When will I be notified about my application status?
We will notify all the applications regarding the interview phase of the application process towards end of July through mid August. Interviews will be conducted by invitation only in August. Selection notification will be announced in late August to mid September. The schedule is subject to change.
What if I have more questions?
Please contact us at ProjectInv@FilmIndependent.org or 310.432.1233.